The other day I road my bike to work like usual. It was about 28 degrees Celsius (82F) and sunny so I went out in my shorts and a long sleeved button up shirt with no shirt underneath. This is widely accepted behavior in Europe so no fashion foul. When I finished up at the music school I got back on my bike to ride home.
Here is the course: I ride from the school less than a mile south to the Rhein. I take a path going west for about 2 miles. Then I hop on a ferry and take it across the river. Then I ride another 3 or so miles back to my apartment. Most of it is bike paths and it is a very beautiful ride.
Last week however it wasn’t the usual peaceful ride I’ve come to enjoy. As I was leaving the school the sky started to rumble. The temperature dropped about 12 degrees and it started “pre raining”. I made it to the ferry largely unscathed. The second we got to the other shore it poured. I don’t think I’ve even walked in rain this hard before. I was immediately soaked. I was pushing hard to keep warm but it was of little effect. The water surged through my shoes and socks. I have no fenders on the bike that I use simply because I can’t afford them. Dirt and gravel from the road flew up my shirt and on to my back. I got home about 20 minutes later and Becca let me in the gate. She brought me towels and kissed my forehead sympathetically.
The whole ride was a fight. I felt like Lieutenant Dan from Forest Gump in that scene where he’s on the boat in the storm shouting at God. I was totally frightened by the lightening that was happening. I was fairly certain that I would be killed. I then postulated that getting hit by lightening must be less likely than getting in a fatal car accident so I rode on.
Meanwhile I guess I’ll save up for a rain jacket and bike with fenders (The bike I’m currently riding is a loaner from my awesome neighbor Gunther.)
Please tell any soaked stories below!